Altice USA, the US-based holding company owned by Netherlands-based Altice Group, has launched its long-awaited initial public offering (IPO), listing a total of 46.551 million shares of Class A common stock on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the ‘ATUS’ ticker symbol. The IPO price is currently expected to be between USD27.00 and USD31.00 per share, potentially raising between USD1.26 billion and USD1.44 billion for the acquisition-hungry telecoms group.
The IPO is widely expected to pave the way for another surge of US M&A activity by Altice, which previously acquired Suddenlink (December 2015) and Cablevision (June 2016). The group has named Cox Communications as a desirable takeover target, although the Atlanta-based firm has sought to quash such speculation. Further down the cableco pecking order, potential acquisition targets include the likes of Mediacom, Cable ONE, Atlantic Broadband and Midco.
Since Altice first stated its intentions to stage an IPO, private equity firm TPG Capital has taken a proactive stance towards M&A, snapping up three mid-sized operators, namely: Wave Broadband (USD2.4 billion), RCN (USD1.6 billion) and Grande Communications Networks (USD650 million). It remains to be seen whether TPG will seek a buyer for its consolidated cable assets, however. Elsewhere, regional player Wide Open West (WOW!), which recently staged its own underwhelming IPO, could yet emerge as an additional takeover target.